Monday, March 9, 2009

The bread

Atlas made a loaf while Paris and I made the other- I sort of combined two recipes... the first from and the second from I didn't have any wheat bran or germ so I added more oats and I can't find buttermilk here and we didn't have any plain yogurt so I made my own buttermilk with milk and apple cider vinegar... And it is perfect toasted with a lot of butter and jam...

Brown Soda Bread
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
3 tablespoons toasted wheat bran
3 tablespoons toasted wheat germ
2 tablespoons old-fashioned oats
2 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 cups (about) buttermilk


Preheat oven to 425°F. Butter 9x5x3-inch loaf pan. Combine first 8 ingredients in large bowl; mix well. Add butter; rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles fine meal. Stir in enough buttermilk to form soft dough. Transfer dough to prepared loaf pan. Bake until bread is dark brown and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Turn bread out onto rack. Turn right side up and cool on rack.

Irish Soda bread (
2 1/4 cups bread flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup wheat bran
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups plain yogurt
Preheat an oven to 425°F. Place a baking sheet in the oven to preheat.

In a large bowl, stir together the flour, oats, bran, baking soda and salt. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the yogurt and stir to blend, forming a rough ball. The dough will start rising as soon as the baking soda comes in contact with the yogurt, so work quickly to form the dough.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead gently for about 30 seconds. The dough should feel soft to the touch. Dust a clean work surface with flour and set the ball of dough on it. Flatten slightly into a 7-inch dome and sprinkle with flour, spreading the flour lightly over the surface. Using a sharp knife, cut a shallow X in the loaf from one side to the other. Transfer the loaf to the preheated baking sheet.

Bake until the loaf sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly. Serve warm. Any leftover bread can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 days. Makes 1 loaf.

Sunday, March 8, 2009


Sunday breakfast this morning was Irish soda bread- made with Atlas and Paris, and a boiled egg. So British. So funny. So yummy and so very easy. No pictures because it is all gone. Over breakfast Rich and I were talking about some things we missed- Rich misses our salad bowl. A great wooden one from Chris and Guillermo . I miss my kitchenaid, of course, but my blender and food processor too. I miss our backyard, garden and Poppet the rotten, bad dog. I miss my two sister not near me. Richard laughed and said that he felt like he was in exile... I said that it was self-imposed exile. I love it here. I really do. I love the grocery stores here and all the quick-make stuff that I would never buy in the States. The other day Paris said she wanted to go home and play with her best friend... I told her this is home. It is really starting to feel like it even with only having about 10% of my (our) things here. I have three teaching weeks left of my fist year. There are some really hard days with the kids- they are what makes this trip hard- missing their friends and my mom guilt. But I like school. I am so glad we are doing this. I am so glad we are here- through all the pain and tears (mostly mine). After exams in May, I don't have school until September! I got a bit carried away a few weeks ago not having seen the sun in a long time and booked a few trips to sunny places...

This is a trip to castle on the beach- we hiked along the shore and climbed cliffs. Poor Paris thought she was going to die, but it was (in her opinion) the best day of her life!